Cheltenham Town will be stepping up their transfer activity as the new Sky Bet League Two season gets underway in just over four weeks’ time.
Manager Gary Johnson has already signed four players so far this summer as Kevin Dawson, Jamie Grimes, Nigel Atangana and Jon Flatt joined the 13 Robins’ players already under contract at Whaddon Road.
In addition to the 17 player squad currently at his disposal, Johnson has confirmed that he is close to bringing three players in on loan.
Some very impressive signings in League Two this summer. Knott and Vincenti amongst them. Hopefully we can follow suit #ctfc
— Luke Saunders (@LukeSaunders17) June 27, 2017
The 61-year-old may raid former club Bristol City for temporary signings, as his son Lee manages the Championship side.
City goalkeepers Max O’Leary and Ivan Lucic both appeared for Cheltenham during pre-season last year. Johnson senior also borrowed Johnny Smith, Diego De Girolamo and Tin Plavotic for short spells during the 2016/17 campaign.
A link between the two clubs is likely to remain, so here are four Bristol City youngsters that Cheltenham Town could potentially target this term.
1- Paul Arnold Garita
A strong and athletic option, 22 year-old striker Arnold Garita would be a perfect loan signing for Cheltenham Town.
The powerful Cameroonian has already proved himself in League Two, scoring 16 goals to help fire Plymouth Argyle to automatic promotion last season.
Garita is now back at Bristol City but is very likely to be loaned out again and with CTFC needing a target man, he certainly fits the bill.
Supporters have been crying out for a physical marksman like John Akinde or Uche Ikpeazu and the Robins urgently need a replacement for top scorer Billy Waters.
2- Shawn McCoulsky
At the other end of the striking spectrum, Shawn McCoulsky offers something completely different to Arnold Garita.
The significantly smaller 20-year old was prolific last year, netting 31 goals across many levels including with Bath City and Bristol City U23’s.
City have recently tied McCoulsky down with a new contract, and clearly see a great deal of potential in the former Dulwich Hamlet front-man.
It is inevitable that Cheltenham will sign one, if not two more strikers this summer as Dan Holman and Danny Wright are currently the only forwards at the club.
Could Gary Johnson take a gamble on the exciting prospect and give him a shot in the EFL?
3- Zak Vyner
New signing Kevin Dawson is expected to operate as a wing back in a 3-5-2 system but Cheltenham are still without an orthodox right back.
Bristol City defender Zak Vyner is rated very highly by Lee Johnson and impressed out on loan at Accrington Stanley for parts of last season, also operating as a centre back.
Agree again. Zak Vyner has had good experience this season in the first team. Half a season at Cheltenham for instance could serve him well
— Rob Mills (@Millz_10) May 19, 2017
When he returned to Ashton Gate, the 20 year-old continued to feature for the U23’s and went on to make a few first team appearances which has further increased his stock.
It would certainly be a coup for Cheltenham Town to bring Vyner back to League Two on loan and he would be the perfect replacement for Manny Onariase.
— Bristol City FC (@bcfctweets) March 4, 2017
4- Lloyd Kelly
The Cheltenham Town defence is an area that still needs reinforcements.
With Jordan Cranston and Daniel O’Shaugnessy, there is no shortage of left footers at the back and signing another may seem unlikely.
But Lloyd Kelly has caught the eye at Bristol City, having captained their U23’s frequently he is in need of first team experience elsewhere.
The 18 year-old is as versatile as Vyner and can play at left back or centre back.
Lee Johnson will know that his youngsters are in safe hands with Gary, but whether Kelly’s first taste of the EFL will be at Cheltenham remains to be seen.